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Advise needed..

Posts: 1
Joined: Jun 2008

Hi my husband was diagnosed this past January with Stage IV Lung Cancer that has also spread to his lower spine. He has competed 14 rounds of radiation and 6 Chemo treatments. The latest CT and MRI showed that both masses have reduced significantly!! We feel so blessed. We were initially told that he would have only three rounds of Chemo, but he responded so well, that 2 more where added. Then the reports came back so well an additional three more treatments again added. Round six become more trouble some Chills, evaluated low-grade fever, low platelet counts and dehydration w/ an overnight admittance to the hospital canceled his treatment that was scheduled for this week. In the meantime his last labs have improved. Neuropathy is a big problem. His hands and legs are very weak. He is now receiving home care for physical and occupational therapy. This was the BEST IDEA I ever had what an improvement!

Here is my problem. It seems every time we get a good report, my husband seem so down. I don’t know how to convince him that we need to take one day at a time and relish the good news. The only time he will leave the house is for a Doctor’s appointment. He uses the excuse that he does not want to go up and down the stairs for the fear of falling. We have handrails on the stairs. He does have a four-wheel walker and does use in the house. Since he is 6'4 – 208lbs. the walker is to heavy for me to lift up and down the stairs :o( once we get to an appointment, I get a wheelchair for him.

The physical therapist said stairs can be very scary and not to rush him that his ability to use the stairs will come soon enough, but in the meantime, how can I cheer him up? Any suggestion will be greatly appreciated.

Thank you in advance


Greggriggs's picture
Posts: 132
Joined: Dec 2006

Hi Katie
I had a lung removed in 2006 . The Chemo kills a lot of blood cells good an bad . I do remember after the surgery going to Er my blood was so bad . It is a scary thing because all that is on your mind is cancer . It stays there day an nite. Is there any way he could sleep down stairs ? I still wear white cotton gloves that might help his hands .Ask his Doc about Noratriptline. it helps ya sleep and is supossed to be good for neuopathy. See if ya can get him interested in this CSN it might help.
Hope it gets better for you an him Keep fighting..

Posts: 48
Joined: Jan 2006

I'm sitting here trying to figure out how to say this. So I'll just say it, of course, everybody is different; everybody's situation is different. I'm not sure there is a fix for attitude and cancer, whether you got the cancer or are the caregiver. But the one thing that helped me more than anything else was a TV show called "Dead Like Me." It's a comedy. It's not at all about cancer, but it is about these people who .... No, I'll let you look it up if you are interested. It is on DVD. And like I said, I don't know why, but it helped me a lot! Good luck and good vibes! trft aka tim

Posts: 1048
Joined: Aug 2006

I will have to look up your show as it is unfamiliar to me. In fact, all we have at my house is a video monitor, so lots of shows are unfamiliar to me! But I certainly have read plenty of research showing the beneficial aspects of comedy on the immune system. Different people enjoy different kinds of comedy shows, but a good belly laugh really helps anyone. I know that when cancer is getting to me that I can't really get into long articles much less books. I bet the same is true on TV shows. Sit-coms, the 30 minute variety, would probably work better. I could read jokes or funny one page comedies, but not whole novels when I was down about cancer. Please understand that I used to be the world's biggest bookworm. Long novels did not stop me in grade school, high school, or college. But being diagnosed with cancer totally shot my attention span and zest for fiction. The worry and depression that comes with a cancer diagnosis is a pretty heavy burden. It zaps more than just the ability to read a good book. There are medicines that can help if the depression is getting in the way. Don't be afraid to talk to his oncologist about it. Also, please take care of yourself. It is not wrong to get someone to sit with your husband a few hours on a regular basis so you can go for a walk, do some shopping, or visit a friend. If you are refreshed by some time out of the house, you will be in a better position to support him. This is especially important if he is down and depressed.

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